Once it is understood that non renewable energy cannot be replaced or replenished within a lifetime, a hundred lifetimes or even in a thousand lifetimes, if at all, then perhaps we will begin to seek alternatives that are both renewable and safe for the environment. At the moment the leading contenders for safer alternatives to non renewable energy are biomass, wind and solar power.
Non Renewable Energy vs. Renewable Energy
Obviously the main difference between non renewable energy and renewable energy is that one source can be depleted while the other can be continually replenished. However, that isn't the only consideration in trying to find suitable alternatives to non renewable energy. At the moment, the sources of non renewable energy utilized by man also have a serious impact on the planet. Among the greatest issues is the carbon footprint those energy sources leave, which in turn is the ultimate cause of global warming.
Wind as an Alternative to Non Renewable Energy
When riding through the State of Texas, it is possible to see literally hundreds if not thousands of windmills scattered across the landscape. While this is a state that is traditionally considered to be the oil capital of the nation, Texas is also known as the windy state. As a result, they have taken to harnessing this power to supplement their electrical grid while utilizing less oil in the manufacturing of electricity. Not only does this save the state a significant amount of money, it increases revenue from exports as well as to provide cleaner energy. The rest of the nation should follow Texas' example in this respect.
Solar Power - The Ultimate Renewable Energy Source
There is nothing as renewable as solar power. The key benefit of solar power, and one which many people aren't aware of, is that even on cloudy days there is enough sunlight to power photovoltaic cells. Of course there needs to be a direct line from the sun to the cells, which means that there will be no 'charging' of those cells during darkness, but technology is ever improving. It is now possible to harness enough power to feed an entire home with enough left over to feed back into the grid fewer cells than ever before.
Biomass - Unchartered Territory
Unfortunately, not enough resources have been allocated to the area of biomass as an alternative to non renewable energy. Within the past decade such products as ethanol (corn alcohol) have become popular additives to gasoline which burns cleaner and helps preserve natural resources by reducing consumption. Biomass is being explored in a number of other areas such as gasses released from manure and other bio products that are continually replenished.
Keeping the air clean of hydrocarbons that result from burning non renewable resources is just the first step in sustaining the integrity of the ecosystem. It is also important to understand that pillaging the earth can have serious repercussions which aren't yet evident. Cleaner and safer alternatives to non renewable energy will provide energy for future generations while leaving the planet intact.